(Warning: I’m about to write something that might be offensive. My blog; my prerogative.)
I’ve informally interviewed a number of women who are in arranged marriages and who’ve had varying experiences with their husbands. Some wives were bitter and jaded without a hint of affection for their husbands. Some wives said that they sincerely love and respect their husbands.
Most of the wives with whom I’ve spoken didn’t experience instant attraction to their betrothed. It grew with time, loyalty, duty, family and shared history and by choice.
When we force ourselves to look for the good in someone, we often find it. It might not be what we wanted or expected, but good is good.
Not all of the wives were with men worthy of admiration. Some have endured life with a-holes. (That can happen to anyone, though, admittedly, in Western society, with less risk of harm.) But the women who focused on their husband’s good qualities, tended to experience more of those good qualities while lessening the expression of “bad” qualities.
Which brings me directly to …
Any of us who’ve received a sincere compliment, whether from someone we know or a stranger, can attest to feeling reciprocal appreciation. When others try to make us feel good—even if we suck at accepting compliments (which is insulting to the giver, so stop that)—we simply and automatically like them more. If the compliment is sincere.
Bonus insight! Holy crap, this shit will work in friendships, with family members and for non-arranged marriages, too! Note to self.
p.s. Yes, I’m aware that there are all degrees of unfairness in arranged marriages, perhaps especially in Western society. Reminder: I’m not here to change cultures or social systems—except when it comes to child marriages, which are simply wrong—but generally, I’m just trying to get y’all un-single and in-love.
Vancouver Matchmaker and Dating, Love and Relationship Expert